Am I the only one who enjoys traveling at this age? Growing up, all of my mentors gave me the same advice - travel at a young age while you don't have any commitments or restrictions. So I've been taking advantage of those two cents. It's something truly eye-opening and amazing about visiting places that you've only heard about. Immersing yourself in a culture that's different from your everyday is exciting to me. What I find most interesting is interacting with people that look just like you but speak an entirely different language and live a totally differently lifestyle. I could do that forever!
As you all may know I took sometime this month to travel to Paris, France for the second time. The first time I traveled to Paris was for a study abroad program and this time was for a girls trip. So you can imagine what things my friends and I got into. Not only did we have free reign to explore whatever we wanted to but this time around I realized why it was so important to go out and see the rest of the world. Here are my reasons why you should travel now:
It's Not As Expensive As You Think
A lot of people become intimidated by the idea of traveling because they think it's expensive, but it doesn't have to be. Sometimes it does take sacrificing a few nights at the bar or a couple pair of shoes but it can be done. Join online forums or local groups to find out about flight deals. Try looking into lodging options like Airbnb or Homeaway. You might have to pack your lunch for work a couple days out of the week but after you book that flight you'll be happy.
Immerse Yourself In A Different Culture
Learning about a different state or country in your geography class is cool and all but it's nothing like actually spending time there. It's easier to learn the language/slang when you travel and you get to experience someone else's culture for a while. I love being inspired by culture and fashion when I visit new places. Even partying in new places can be fun. I partied in Paris during my vacation, and let me tell you..they go in. Most importantly I think it becomes easier to even understand someone else's point of view, by walking in their shoes for a few days.
Other than learning slang/language and culture, take sometime time to learn the history. Visiting museums and going on city tours may sound cliche but they can actually be fun. While I was in Paris my friends and I participated in the Black Paris Tour, which was absolutely amazing and I would highly recommend it if you are ever in Paris. To make a long story short we learned about how American Black history and Black history in general impacted Parisian culture. Basically, we got to learn everything they didn't teach us in history class. So spice it! Put a fun a twist on educational tours and experiences. It doesn't have to be traditional. Spend sometime exploring Groupon or Travel Blogs, they can be a great place to start.
Relax..You Deserve It!
We deserve a break every now and then especially as young pros who are constantly trying to prove ourselves in the workplace. So even if it's a weekend trip, take it. Everyday on your trip doesn't have to be about hitting the town and exploring the city. Sometimes it's just great to getaway. While in Paris, my friends and I spent a couple nights inside, drinking wine, relaxing and just taking in the fact that we were across the world. We work hard and it's okay to reward yourself every now and then.
Because You Can, So You Should
Not everyone has the opportunity to travel and if you can travel you should. While we were on our Black Paris tour our awesome tour guide reminded my friends and I that we were living someone's dream. That made all of us a little emotional but it's true. So many people hope to visit the world and if you have the opportunity you should take advantage of it. People who came before us will never get to see the wonders of the world but we are part of a time that doesn't limit us or put any restrictions on what we can do. It's an amazing feeing knowing that we can take advantage of the opportunities our ancestors hoped for.
So friends I hope you all plan a couple trips this year, and take advantage of the freedom we have to go wherever we want. If you already have some trips planned, share them with us. Let us know why you like to travel.